Anshel Pfeffer

Prosor: no chance for Israel at UN

By Anshel Pfeffer, September 1, 2011

The Israeli government is still undecided on how best to respond to the now almost-certain overwhelming vote in favour of Palestinian statehood at the United Nations General Assembly later this month.

According to an assessment sent to the Foreign Ministry in Jerusalem by its ambassador to the UN, Ron Prosor, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's hopes of a significant group of Western countries

More..

Tel Aviv nightclub attack sparks terror fears

By Anshel Pfeffer, September 1, 2011

The terror attack near a nightclub in south Tel Aviv last weekend was an isolated incident but security forces are worried that it is a harbinger of a wave of new attacks that will intensify towards the United Nations General Assembly vote on Palestinian independence at the end of the month.

Mohammed Sufan, a 20-year-old from the Kalkilya area, seemed to have acted without the backing of a terr

More..

Syria's chemical weapons may land in the lap of Hizbollah

By Anshel Pfeffer, September 1, 2011

Control of large stockpiles of chemical weapons manufactured and held by the Syrian army is a major concern for Israel following a possible breakdown of control by the Assad regime.

While they have never used them on the battlefield, the Syrians are known to have manufactured, with North Korean and Iranian assistance, large quantities of chemical agents, mainly nerve gas such as Sarin and VX.

More..

Turkey and Israel in scramble to avert diplomatic deep freeze

By Anshel Pfeffer, September 1, 2011

Israeli and Turkish diplomats are still seeking a formula whereby the two countries can find a way to put the Gaza flotilla crisis behind them.

The United Nations report on the 2010 flotilla - expected to justify Israel's actions to a large degree - is to be published this weekend. After its release, it will be extremely difficult to reach a compromise.

More..

Jerusalem's multi-faith train crosses city, creed and gender

By Anshel Pfeffer, August 25, 2011

It might be seven years later than the original schedule and take twice the time to arrive than that promised by its planners, but as of last Friday, Jerusalem finally has Israel's first light-rail network.

Well, not exactly a network: so far there is only one line, 14 kilometres from the Pisgat Ze'ev neighbourhood in the north-eastern corner of the capital, all the way through the town centre

More..

Egypt: relations deteriorate

By Anshel Pfeffer, August 25, 2011

The relationship between Israel and Egypt was further strained over the past week as the Egyptian government accused Israeli soldiers of responsibility for the deaths of five of its border guards during the terror attack near Eilat last Thursday.

More..

Eilat: incursions set to continue

By Anshel Pfeffer, August 25, 2011

The escalation in Israel's south ended almost as abruptly as it began, with no clear winners. Israel lost seven civilians and two soldiers in the terror attack on the border near Eilat. In retaliation, it killed 12 members of terrorist groups in Gaza, including those who allegedly planned the attack.

Three Palestinian civilians were also killed.

More..

Gaddafi is gone but will Assad be next?

By Anshel Pfeffer, August 25, 2011

The collapse of the Gaddafi regime in Libya this week is expected to have little direct effect on Israel, but it could provide inspiration for the pro-democracy forces in Syria.

More..

Israel's ambassador to the UK due next month

By Anshel Pfeffer, August 19, 2011

Israel's new ambassador to the United Kingdom, London-born Daniel Taub, will officially begin his tenure before Rosh Hashanah, at the end of September.

Ambassador Taub, 49, was originally due to arrive at his post on August 28, but may only arrive for a "private visit" on that date.

More..

China and Israel shake over new military links

By Anshel Pfeffer, August 18, 2011

The arrival of the chief of Chinese military, General Chan Bingde, on Sunday in Israel for a four-day visit is a signal of the thawing of security relations between the countries.

China reduced its diplomatic and defence ties with Israel in 2000 following Israel's cancellation, under US pressure, of a £150m deal to sell early-warning aircraft to the Chinese Air Force.

More..

Hardship relief on the cards for Israelis

By Anshel Pfeffer, August 18, 2011

The government committee that was appointed last week by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to come up with a programme to alleviate the financial hardships of Israelis began its work this week.

The committee, headed by Professor Trachtenberg, visited sites in Tel Aviv and Beer Sheva to talk to the protest leaders, and is set to begin its meetings next week.

More..

Egypt moves to stem Sinai chaos

By Anshel Pfeffer, August 18, 2011

In an attempt to end the growing anarchy in the Sinai Peninsula, Egypt began a major military operation this week to root out the Islamist terrorists who have been operating in the area.

The Egyptian operation was co-ordinated with the Israeli government, as is required by the peace accord between the two countries.

More..

Extreme settlers banished

By Anshel Pfeffer, August 11, 2011

Israel's security forces have begun expelling extreme settlers from the West Bank in an effort to circumvent violent flare-ups next month, when the UN vote on a Palestinian state is expected to take place.

Twelve residents of Yitzhar were last week issued with orders limiting their movements. Three of them were ordered to remain on the settlement and not leave it.

More..

Assad losing Arab support

By Anshel Pfeffer, August 11, 2011

Syria is rapidly losing the support of other Arab nations as its army continues to attack cities and towns where there are supporters of democracy.

More..

Israel divided on riot warnings

By Anshel Pfeffer, August 11, 2011

The Israeli leadership is divided over the severity of the violence expected next month when the Palestinians are planning to seek an independent state at the United Nations.

The leaders of the Palestinian Authority have called upon the Palestinian public to participate in non-violent demonstrations during the UN vote at the end of September.

More..

Netanyahu digs in as tent city protest grows

By Anshel Pfeffer, August 11, 2011

The leaders of the social protest movement in Israel and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu this week entrenched themselves in their opposing positions.

Mr Netanyahu established on Monday a committee of experts to talk to the protesters, who last week published a detailed list of economic and social demands.

More..

Radicals infiltrate Cairo rally

By Anshel Pfeffer, August 4, 2011

The first large-scale participation of the Muslim Brotherhood party in demonstrations in Cairo's Tahrir Square last weekend has raised fears that the radical Muslim group is planning to participate in a new Egyptian government following elections in November.

On Friday, tens of thousands of protesters staged one of the largest demonstrations in Tahrir Square since the toppling of President Hosn

More..

For house protests, read class warfare

By Anshel Pfeffer, August 4, 2011

On the face of it, Israel's economy has never been in such a good state. Unemployment is at an all-time low at 5.7 per cent, the gross domestic product grew last year by 4.5 per cent, the shekel is strong, trade is booming, Israeli companies are traded on Nasdaq and foreign corporations are snapping up local companies.

More..

Economic rage consumes Israel

By Anshel Pfeffer, August 4, 2011

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has refused to meet personally with the leaders of the housing protest, now into its fourth week of encampments and demonstrations.

The prime minister tried to seize the initiative this week after being caught off guard by the scale and perseverance of the protesters.

Meanwhile, cracks started to show within the protest's leadership.

More..

Mysteries surround death of Rabbi Elazar Abuhatzira

By Anshel Pfeffer, August 4, 2011

Rabbi Elazar Abuhatzira's death turned out to be as enigmatic as his life.

One of the most venerable mystics in Israel, Rabbi Abuhatzira was murdered in his own yeshivah last Thursday by Asher Dahan, a part-time teacher from the strictly-Orthodox town of Elad.

More..